Sunday, March 30, 2008

A Q&A about wrap slings


I have been neglecting my friend Cynthia who asked me about my wrap sling several months ago. Baby Jack will be here in 8 more weeks and he is doing great! (If you haven't been praying for Baby Jack, why on earth not? Get praying!)
So here is my Q&A with Cynthia...

(1) Is it the EllaRoo that you have?
yes. I have the 4.6m one. You can sometimes get a great deal on them on ebay. I live in the very hot and humid midwest. I like the Ellaroo because it is a lighter weight weave than some of the other woven wraps.

(2) I'm nervous I'm not going to get the tying down pat and will just become frustrated and never use it. Did you get used to the art of it fairly quickly?
No, I spent a lot of time practicing with dolls and stuffed animals! LOL! Honestly for me, the easiest most versatile way to tie the wrap is by following the Moby wrap instructions. I did not like the Moby wrap because it was too stretchy and I had to retie fairly often because it would stretch out too much. But the ease of pre-tying made using it extremely convenient. It will take more trial and error pre-tying because you'll need to get the feel for how much slack to have. It may be easier to get started with the hold and tie carries that come with the wrap.

My favorite newborn carry was the
Newborn Cross Carry. It is very snuggly and secure. The baby will not swing away from your body like in a typical pouch or ring sling so I could do laundry and play with the kids. And because it uses both shoulders I could carry a bigger baby for longer.

(3) How old were your kids when you stopped using it?
Ladybug is 18months and I still carry her in the wrap or Mei Tai carrier. We have not owned a stroller other than our huge twin monstrosity. I find it much more convenient to get around with them in a carrier.

(4) I glanced at the directions of how to tie it, is it seriously just a knot in the back? Does that feel secure enough?
It is seriously just a knot. You'll want to change where you tie the knot. I usually adjust the fabric so I can tie it on my hip. That way it isn't poking into my back when I sit down, or pushing on the baby's butt. It really is secure.

(5) Can you sit (all the way to the ground) and get back up again without having to retie it?
It depends on the size of the baby and the way you are carrying him. While your baby is smaller and if you are using the Newborn Cross carry or the Cradle Hold then yes, you can sit comfortably and get back up no problem.

Again, I prefer the woven carriers, they really stay more secure. Also, in the Moby Wrap Cradle Hold directions above, my back hurts just looking at that picture. I carry my babies much higher than that. Even in my pouch sling, I ordered it a little snug because I like to carry the baby high. Now, word of warning. Try to switch which side you carry him in the first couple of months. The constant pressure on your very full breasts can lead to mastitis.

Did I cover it all?

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Updates and all that.

You have to use those kind of titles on your posts when you shirk off the responsibility of being a good bloggette. If it makes you feel any better, I have not just been ignoring my blog but I've been ignoring yours, as well. By Bloglines feed is bending beneath the weight of 112 unread posts.

As far as this pregnancy goes, same old same old (who'd of thought I had this much blood in me?), no news is good news. I'm 12 weeks now and it is getting increasingly difficult to hide. I pray for life, but if death must come I wish it would hurry up already. My loss at 13 weeks was by far my most traumatic.

I've spent the last week up to my ears in worry and planning with Skaterboy. I've told you before about the sweetness and goodness of this young man. And he really is. But, this child of mine seems bound and determined to have no future. What I wish for this 16 year old is the life of a regular old teenager. One where he goes to school with his friends and then drives to work a couple of days after school and then out with his friends on the weekend. Maybe to a football game or a homecoming dance. Sure I might have to get on his case about his grades. Maybe ground him for curfew violations or even have to deal with issues like drinking or sex.

He really is a good kid. Never in any real trouble. But, this is actually a frustration for me. Not that I'm looking for a hellraiser, but a kid that...does something. He has no motivation toward anything. I even told Chowder once that at least if he was a drug dealer he would be like an entrepreneur. He'd never steal a car because it would take to much work.

So, here we are. He failed all of his classes last semester (he is enrolled in our debunked school district's Virtual Academy) and is well on his way to doing the same this semester. Meaning failing freshman year...twice. (If you are new to the Skaterboy saga, it is complex and you may have to read some back story to understand how we, as parents, let this happen.) I haven't given him a dime since he turned 16, because once you are old enough to make your own spending money, you're too old for allowance. No job. He just does without. etc. etc. If you ask him what he's going to do in the future, he just gives blank stares. There is no part of his life right now where he is experiencing success. And that is where my biggest concern lies. What this life of failure does to his psyche.

I was talking to My Chicks about all this, and I realize now with the utmost of shame that I had lost hope in my own child and in myself as a mother. One of My Chicks jumped onto her gallant white steed and rode to our rescue. She is a recruiter for a tech high school in the county. She came to my house and ran Skaterboy through a whole gambit of evaluations and tests that helped to flesh out what kind of future might be fulfilling to him. And then, better than just a dream, she gave us a plan. What Skaterboy needs to do to get this accomplished.

What he needs to do is salvage this semester, go to summer school and hopefully start next year as a sophomore. And then next year, he will move out into the county with my mom so he can attend this school. And when he is done, he'll have a diploma and certification and training if he decides not to go on to college. I know I know. I should have just done that this year. (It's kind of like IVF when I just wanted to try everything else first and still ended up with IVF, just years and thousands of dollars later.) So, yes, I will be signing over guardianship, but he'll be 17 by then and only a year before he's legal anyway. Plus, they are overdeveloping out there and a whole slew of shops and restaurants just opened up within a mile of my mom's house. They've got to be looking for a bunch of dumb kids to do crappy jobs. And hopefully he will come up with enough money to get a car. (I will match him dollar for dollar, but I won't work harder for his car than he is willing to work.)

Better than all of this...It's not my plan. It's Skaterboy's plan.

I have decided to postpone my own return to school until the fall. My first priority right now is to get him through. So, I will still be adhering to my New Year's resolution of starting in 2008. It will just be the fall of 2008 and not the summer.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Servanthood

Today is Maundy Thursday and Chowder had 2 different services he had to do. The second one was at 7pm which is the same time as bedtime in our house. Rather than struggle through a service with the kids where they probably would not even grasp the story, I stayed home with them. At prayer time we all climbed into my bed and I took out the bible to read about the night before Jesus died.

We talked about the Passover meal and how important it was for Jesus to celebrate this last feast with his friends. We talked about how he knew he was going to die and about Judas and Peter. Then we talked about what Jesus did next. How he took off his outer garments and tied a towel around his waist and filled a bowl with water and went to each of his followers and washed their feet. We talked about how people traveled in those times and how dirty people's feet were and how surprising it would have been to the disciples that the Messiah would kneel down at their feet and take those dirty, scabby, cracked feet (this was followed by an appropriate chorus of ewwwwwwws) in his own two hands and gently wash them.

I asked them if they didn't find it surprising, too. That God, the King of Heaven, would kneel down to wash their feet. To do such a demeaning job. Jellybean looked at me confused. She didn't find it surprising at all. Trying to help her understand this great gesture of servanthood, how low Jesus sank to perform this task, I asked her, "What kind of person would do this kind of thing?" I was asking this question with the intention of prompting her to answer, "a servant." But, then she stole my breath away. In the most matter-of-fact, how-could-you-be-so-dense way, she answered, "A mother."




of course.
In this child's mind, God wasn't demeaning himself. He was simply caring for his people. Just like any loving parent would do. He wouldn't be disturbed by my scabs or my dirt. He would simply take them in his loving hands and gently wash them clean.


Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Unsaid Prayer

I can't tell you guys how blessed I feel to have people all over the world, from every faith, praying for little Sweeting right now. I can't tell you how much I need this. I need someone else praying these prayers. Because...I can't. I can't bring myself to pray them. I've prayed them too many times and my faith has been shaken to the ground like a bunch of rotten apples around my feet.

I can't say

"Please, God bring this little baby to us. Please let her be born. Please bring her to us so we can love with her and laugh with her and sing with her and fight with her and dance with her and cry with her. Give us the chance to dote on her and learn from her. Let her bring us her stories and her dreams.

Let her feel the warmth of the sun on her face and the wind in her hair and the terror and exhilaration as she rides her bike too fast down the hill. Let her curl her toes in the warm sand as she runs and giggles from the ocean waves. Let her stand in awe at the majesty of your mountains. Let her lie in the summer grass and make wishes on the stars in the sky. Let her shiver with cold as she sleds down the hill with her brothers and sisters.

Let her know amazement at the depth of her own love as she holds her child in her arms. Let her grow healthy and strong full of good food from your bountiful earth. Let her grow in faith and courage as she comes to know and love you.
Please merciful Lord, give us this chance."

I have prayed this prayer until it sounded like a broken record. I have tried praying it a different way. Tried putting emphasis on different words. Tried giving away money. Tried fasting. Tried standing on my head and saying this prayer. But, still I have not found the right combination, the secret code to unlock the promise, "Ask and it shall be given to you."

Instead, I pray this every night...
Thank you for today with little Sweeting.
Please God, can I have another?

Friday, March 14, 2008

Hanging in there...

Sorry, it's taken me so long to post. We have a beautiful day today so we picked the kids up from school and headed to the zoo.

Sweeting is still there. She is measuring almost a week ahead (for all that means at this stage.) They couldn't see the source of the bleeding which leaves us in the dark and up in the air. They like to be able to see where the bleeding is coming from.

But, right now I have an almost 10 week old little wee one growing and beating.
I'm thanking God for each day.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Lazarus and all that...

Obviously Sweeting hasn't come back to life. She was always there. But my hope, for better or worse, has come back to life. I found the heartbeat again yesterday, but not this morning. Still bleeding. Still no symptoms.

While Sweeting has made it to a critical stage, she is still far from safe. I have seen babies on office ultrasound machines, hearts beating, one day and two days later, at the viability ultrasound they have gone. I have seen a baby waving his hands at me, and listened to his heartbeat, and then suddenly at 13 weeks he silently slipped out into the toilet with no warning. So, my newly reborn hope is still very subdued.

I have an appointment on Friday morning where I'll ask for an ultrasound if they don't have one already. I won't do the blood work. I really hope she makes it until then. The worst miscarriages are the ones that come and go with nothing concrete to hold on to. I would love to see her and have pictures of her. 2 more days, Little Sweeting. 2 more days.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Peek-In-Monday...A Peek Into My Crazy

Sometimes when I am having a hard time shaking a compulsion, I'll record myself and then watch it objectively and many times this will help to get me to snap out of that particular compulsion. Many times. not always. So, after three days and many hours spent on my latest compulsion, I decided to record it. I never share these with anyone. I have always deleted them right away.

I've debated whether to share this with you, because it is an incredibly intimate picture into my world and my self. But in the end I figured, "What the hell! I don't know these people anyway." and I wanted to share this with you and couldn't find the words to express myself. So, listen to the whole thing (there is no picture). All 9 mins and 14 secs. (I edited it down from 44 mins and 37 seconds) I know I know. You'll be bored after the first 3 minutes, but go ahead and power through. for me.

We'll talk later.
When I can get my words and thoughts to work together.

(btw~I tend to have a bit of a mouth on me when I berate myself. Not like Rated R more like Rated PG...maybe PG 13.)

video

Sunday, March 09, 2008

to be clear...

Too much graphic information to follow.

I'm sorry I have been so vague, I'm getting emails from friends asking, "So...are you miscarrying or just worried that you will?" I started spotting almost 2 weeks ago, the bleeding has gotten heavy in the last few days and I'm starting to pass clots. So, it shouldn't be long now.

I finally told My Chicks on Friday night after we went to see the Other Boleyn Girl. Which, by the way was very disappointing. I was able to put my nerdy need for historical facts aside while reading the book because it was historical fiction after all, and the story was so well written. It was the perfect beach read last summer. But the movie tried to cover too much ground and too many relationships. And what was fat and fascinating in the book was flat and lifeless on the screen. Why can't we make epic movies anymore? What's wrong with Dr. Zhivago with an intermission? Why do we have to have the confines of 2 hours to tell the story?

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Totally Self-Absorbed Right Now

and I hope none of my internet friends are taking it personally that I haven't returned emails or commented on blogs. Please know I'm still reading every now and again, and I think of you daily, and I still send up my prayers for each of you.

Spring can't get here fast enough.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

When should you make a decision?

My friends and loved ones are telling me to wait. Chowder is telling me to wait. Hell! I'm telling me to wait. But why?

Why shouldn't Chowder and I make our respective appointments right now? Me for a hernia repair (ala tummy tuck) and him for the V. Isn't now exactly when we should make these decisions? Before that cruel illusionist, Time, gets his silky smooth hands all over it? Before I am lulled and whispered to believe that things will be different?

Time is not a good addition to judgment. Time is not a wise counselor. Even the pain of childbirth is buffed away. Even the emotional heartache soothed with a balm. It heals us over and makes us feel new again. How many times have we screwed something up? And promised we would change. You almost get into a car accident and then you swear you'll be a more cautious, alert driver to protect yourself and your loved ones. And you are. For a little while and then Time rocks you back into complacency and suddenly you are answering the cell phone again while driving Baby to the supermarket. Your mother is diagnosed with lung cancer and you quit smoking...for a year and then Time erases the risk and you are lighting up again.

I'm not sure waiting until my heart has somehow put itself back together (again!) is really a good plan. I'm here. now. This hurts like shit. physically and emotionally. I'm living the massacre now. I will soon be empty and alone inside myself again. I don't want to do this an eighth, ninth or tenth time! Seven is enough. Hell! Six was enough! but I didn't learn. Time showed up and wrapped me in his silky hypnotic embrace and then his buddy Hope had his turn with me.
No. Now is definitely the time.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Right Number, Wrong Table

I was talking to Chowder last night and told him he was right. After this pregnancy is said and done, I'm done. I've had enough. I'm crying uncle.

I'm not particularly sweet and sentimental about my lost babies. I never picture them as little angels or being rocked in God's arms. Sadly, I picture them as simply lost. As I was thinking on and praying about this, the number seven suddenly jumped out at me. This will be my seventh lost one. I'm beginning to think that the dining table in my dreams is actually my Welcoming Table. And this dream is my way of visiting with them. Well, this loss will fill the last seat at the table. So, I think it is time to just sit down and eat.